Parents' Guide to

The Host

By Sandie Angulo Chen, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 13+

Lots of kisses, but "Twi"-fi thriller isn't that compelling.

Movie PG-13 2013 121 minutes
The Host Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this movie.

Community Reviews

age 11+

Based on 8 parent reviews

age 9+

Ignore the critics

The critics seem to lose their soul when writing movie reviews sometimes. The girl that took over the body was not bratty at all. She was very kind and considerate and slightly confused. They dwell on the negative aspects and make it sound worse than it actually is. I think you should give it a try.

This title has:

Great messages
age 10+

Fantastic movie.

Very little language and barely anything sexual, not enough to be concerned about. A few violent scenes, but nothing graphic. Just scenes that imply violent things. I recommend this movie for mature kids! I have three young ones who love it. (12, 15 and 10)

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (8):
Kids say (30):

As sci-fi movies go, THE HOST is one part Invasion of the Body Snatchers and three parts maudlin romance. Director Andrew Niccol doesn't bother with much world building except for the fact that the pacifist Souls all have a thing for wearing shades of white and driving souped-up silver Lotuses; there's no real explanation for the hypocrisy of a supposedly pacifist alien race thinking that it's all right to parasitically control an entire species. And while reading the back and forth between Wanderer and Melanie made perfect sense in the book, the movie translates that by having a narrated dialogue with two different inflections -- Wanderer's smooth tones and Melanie's faux Louisianan accent.

While teen (and adult) viewers who are only interested in the steamy kisses and the mind-bending love quadrangle will be content, most audiences will laugh at The Host's unintentionally funny moments -- like pretty much every time the Melanie voice speaks. Ronan, who's riveting in films like Atonement and Hanna, is deserving of better, although at the very least she manages to pull off her romantic moments with both Melanie's love Jared and Wanda's suitor Ian with conviction. Too bad the movie is more of a frothy alien romance than a true science-fiction thriller.

Movie Details

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